The Philadelphia Phillies have come to an agreement with free agent relief pitcher David Robertson per a Tweet from MLB.com executive reporter Mark Feinsand.
BREAKING: David Robertson has agreed to a two-year deal with the Phillies that guarantees him at least $23 million. He’ll earn $10M in 2019, $11M in 2020, with a $12M club option ($2M buyout) for 2021. He’s passed a physical and the deal is complete.
— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) January 3, 2019
The Phillies were reportedly one of the finalists for his services along with his former New York Yankees club. Robertson, who will turn 34-years-old in the early days of the upcoming 2019 season, could become the Phillies new closer, or could simply be used as one more experienced back-end option in manager Gabe Kapler‘s bullpen.
Feinsand quoted Robertson as follows in the aftermath of the agreement:
“Philly really checked off all the boxes for me. They are hungry to get back to the postseason and win. They have a great fan base, a beautiful ballpark and a special focus on charity. They’ve put together a great squad and I think I can bring a lot to the team in the back end of their bullpen.”
Feinsand further reports that Robertson has passed his physical with the team, and the deal is official.
Robertson was originally selected by the Yankees in the 17th round of the 2006 MLB Amateur Draft out of the University of Alabama. He broke into the big-leagues in 2008 with New York, pitching in the Bronx through the 2014 season.
The righty was part of the Yankees bullpen when they took out the Phillies in six games in the 2009 World Series. He pitched in both Games One and Five of that Fall Classic, which were the two Phillies victories, allowing two hits and a walk over 2.1 innings while striking out two batters.
In 2011, Robertson became an American League all-star for the lone time in his career. He also received both AL Cy Young and Most Valuable Player votes that season. He became the Yankees closer in 2014 and registered 39 Saves, and then became a free agent.
In December of 2014, Robertson signed a four-year, $46 million dollar free agent deal with the Chicago White Sox. Over the next two seasons he saved 34 and 37 games for the Chisox.
As the non-waiver trade deadline was approaching in mid-July 2017, Robertson was shipped back to the Yankees in a deal that sent veteran reliever Tyler Clippard and three prospects to Chicago. To that point in the season he had registered another 13 Saves, but with New York he became mostly a setup man to closer Aroldis Chapman.
What a relief. pic.twitter.com/ir5iKkpzzM
— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) January 3, 2019
Over the course of an 11-year career in Major League Baseball with the Yankees and White Sox, Robertson has outstanding career 2.88 ERA, 1.145 WHIP, and 2.81 FIP marks.
He has surrendered just 492 hits over 657 innings with 854 strikeouts across 654 games, registering 137 Saves in that time. Robertson has also proven durable, taking the hill for at least 60 innings in the last nine consecutive seasons.
This is likely another move, joining the addition of free agent outfielder Andrew McCutchen and the trade for infielder Jean Segura, to help entice either Manny Machado or Bryce Harper – or both – into also signing with the Phillies.
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